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    #11

    Re: Fortunately (for us), these documents have been preserved.

    Quote Originally Posted by YAMATO2201 View Post



    A certain native BrE speaker says "for them" modifies "Luckily". What do you think?


    NOT A TEACHER


    Hello, Yamato:

    I have found some information that may interest you.

    "Luckily for Herbert, the gun was not loaded."

    Four respected grammarians in their book say that the meaning of that sentence is "Herbert was lucky that the gun was not loaded."

    They then add that the prepositional phrase "for Herbert" specifies "that luckily is not to be generalized, but applies specifically (my emphasis) to Herbert."


    Source: Quirk, Greenbaum, Leech, and Svartvik, A Comprehensive Grammar of the English Language (1985 edition), page 630.

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    #12

    Re: Fortunately (for us), these documents have been preserved.

    Quote Originally Posted by YAMATO2201 View Post
    Please look at the sentence below:

    Luckily for them, he braked in time. (OALD)

    A certain native BrE speaker says "for them" modifies "Luckily". What do you think?
    I think the same as I did before. The PP "for them" is not modifier, but complement of "luckily", and together they form the evaluative adjunct "luckily for them" (an adverb phrase).

    In "Luckily for them, he braked in time", the proposition that he braked in time is presented as a fact, and the speaker adds an evaluation which amounts to saying "It is lucky for them that this is true".

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    #13

    Re: Fortunately (for us), these documents have been preserved.

    Quote Originally Posted by PaulMatthews View Post
    The PP "for them" is not modifier,
    Is there a flaw in the following definition of "modifier"?

    modifier noun
    (grammar)
    a word or group of words that describes a noun phrase or restricts its meaning in some way
    https://www.oxfordlearnersdictionari...ier?q=modifier
    I am not a teacher. I am currently studying basic English grammar.

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    #14

    Re: Fortunately (for us), these documents have been preserved.

    Quote Originally Posted by YAMATO2201 View Post
    Is there a flaw in the following definition of "modifier"?

    modifier noun
    (grammar)
    a word or group of words that describes a noun phrase or restricts its meaning in some way
    https://www.oxfordlearnersdictionari...ier?q=modifier
    No, there's no flaw in that definition. Why should there be?

    But "for them" is not a modifier. It's a complement, a kind of dependent that has to be licensed (specially permitted) by the head word.

    By contrast, modifiers do not have to be licensed by the head word.

    See here: http://www.ucl.ac.uk/internet-grammar/phfunc/compl2.htm
    Last edited by PaulMatthews; 12-May-2018 at 18:32. Reason: typo

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    #15

    Re: Fortunately (for us), these documents have been preserved.

    Quote Originally Posted by PaulMatthews View Post
    No, there's no flaw in that definition.
    Do you think the following statement is correct?

    In “speak quietly,” the adverb “quietly” is a modifier.
    https://www.oxfordlearnersdictionari...glish/modifier
    I am not a teacher. I am currently studying basic English grammar.

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    #16

    Re: Fortunately (for us), these documents have been preserved.

    Quote Originally Posted by YAMATO2201 View Post
    Do you think the following statement is correct?
    Quote Originally Posted by YAMATO2201 View Post

    In “speak quietly,” the adverb “quietly” is a modifier.
    https://www.oxfordlearnersdictionari...glish/modifier
    Maybe I shouldn't pre-empt PaulMatthews' response but yes, it is.

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    #17

    Re: Fortunately (for us), these documents have been preserved.

    Quote Originally Posted by YAMATO2201 View Post
    Is there a flaw in the following definition of "modifier"?




    NOT A TEACHER


    Hello, Yamato

    I have found some information that may interest you.

    1. "Luckily for me."

    a. One source says that "for me" is a complement that completes the meaning of "luckily."

    2. "Luckily for him."

    a. One source says that "for him" is a postmodifier (a modifier occurring after the head word "luckily").


    Source 1: The Oxford Companion to the English Language (1992 edition), page 242.
    Source 2: The Routledge Dictionary of English Studies (2012), accessed through Google.

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    #18

    Re: Fortunately (for us), these documents have been preserved.

    The Routledge Dictionary fails to take account of the principles of complementation, the main one being that complements have to be licensed by the head.

    There is no doubt at all that the PP "for him" is licensed by the head "luckily", and thus must be a complement.

    Here again is a link to the UCL (University College London) website which gives exactly the same example as a complement:

    http://www.ucl.ac.uk/internet-grammar/phfunc/compl2.htm

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    #19

    Re: Fortunately (for us), these documents have been preserved.

    Quote Originally Posted by PaulMatthews View Post
    The Routledge Dictionary fails to take account of the principles of complementation, the main one being that complements have to be licensed by the head.

    There is no doubt at all that the PP "for him" is licensed by the head "luckily", and thus must be a complement.

    Here again is a link to the UCL (University College London) website which gives exactly the same example as a complement:

    http://www.ucl.ac.uk/internet-grammar/phfunc/compl2.htm
    I don't think anybody's arguing that for him is not a complement. The issue is whether it's a kind of modifier.

    You seem to say it's not. Are you saying the reason it's not a modifier is because it's a complement? Or just that it doesn't fall within your broadest definition of 'modifier'? Are postmodifiers equally free from having to be licensed by the head?

    Please don't think I'm arguing here. I just want to learn something. I'm wondering why Routledge might have said that.

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    #20

    Re: Fortunately (for us), these documents have been preserved.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheParser View Post
    They then add that the prepositional phrase "for Herbert" specifies "that luckily is not to be generalized, but applies specifically (my emphasis) to Herbert."
    In post #4, by saying "for them modifies Fortunately", I meant "Fortunately applies specifically to us".
    I am not a teacher. I am currently studying basic English grammar.

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